Federal judge voids national mask mandate for travel

The Justice Department declined to comment Monday when asked if the government planned to appeal the ruling.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) – A federal judge in Florida has voided the national mask mandate covering airplanes and other public transportation as exceeding the authority of U.S. health officials.

The decision Monday by U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle in Tampa also said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention improperly failed to justify its decision and did not follow proper rulemaking.

The CDC recently extended the mask mandate until May 3 to allow more time to study the BA.2 omicron subvariant.

The Justice Department declined to comment Monday when asked if the government planned to appeal the ruling.